With the decadent meals, holiday parties and family engagements consuming the upcoming month, it can be tough to maintain a fitness routine and healthy eating. We hope the tips below will help you navigate your busy holiday schedule and the seemingly endless platters of delicious food.
1. Have a Plan (and a Back-up Plan)
Creating a plan of your workout schedule and meals will help the next month go much smoother. Of course, you will have to work in some flexibility. For example, if an unexpected dinner with your extended cousins pops up, you may have to switch to a quick at-home workout and a protein shake for breakfast in order to account for a very calorie-rich meal later in the day. If you’re not going to be able to keep up with your evening gym sessions during the holidays, opt to go early in the morning before everyone else has even gotten out of bed.
2. Drink Plenty of Water
This is important for so many reasons. Our brains can often confuse thirst with hunger so before you decide to go for seconds, drink a big glass of water. You should also try to drink at least two glasses of water before each big holiday meal; you will likely feel full much sooner. With the cocktails and sugary beverages flowing, it’s also especially important to drink plenty of water and to try to incorporate fiber-rich snacks, even if it’s just a handful of nuts.
3. Moderation and Indulgences
Instead of completely restricting yourself or feeling guilty about eating dessert, choose one item to indulge in but limit yourself to one serving. Moderation is always key during the holiday season. It’s so easy to overeat when there seems to be no end to the plates of delicious treats.
4. Quick Exercises
If you can’t make it to the gym, try to incorporate some bodyweight exercises or high-intensity interval training (HIIT) at home. YouTube workout videos are your friend when it comes to quick, fat-burning exercises. You can still get a great workout in, even if you only 10 or 20 minutes.
5. Keep Moving
It’s easy to sit around the table for hours chatting with family after a big meal. Instead, suggest taking a family walk so you can continue the conversation while still squeezing in some exercise! Your body will thank you.
6. Limit your Stress
With the shopping rush and numerous holiday parties and family gatherings, the next few months can be stressful. Do your best to limit your stress, whether it’s just slowing down or even saying “no” to a few engagements. Stress heightens your cortisol levels and affects your insulin, which can make fat-burning even tougher.
7. Healthier Recipes
If you have any say in the meal preparation or are bringing some food to contribute, try incorporating some healthier holiday foods. There are plenty of trimmed-down alternative recipes to choose from!
8. Set Goals
Don’t wait until December 31st to think about your fitness and health goals for the upcoming year. Setting your goals now will help you not lose focus in December.
Let us know in the comments below how you plan to stay on track this holiday season!